The grey clouds above Sophie’s head threatened rain at any moment, but the temperature was so pleasant that she doesn’t care. The terrace of the building where she rent her studio apartment one year back, was so big that could host 500 people at least, and yet no one of the resident ever used it. The thunder was getting closer, and the wind was more intense and cooler: the perfect weather, for her.
It was the first anniversary of her arrive to London and she couldn’t believe that all that time was already passed by. Sitting there, watching the rooftop of the city, her feelings was totally mixed up. Was she happy? Satisfied with her life? She wasn’t sure, so maybe the answer was no.
“Please Sophie, come home. I messed up and I miss you. I love you”. Before that text she was fine. The city welcomed her in a way she couldn’t imagine: she felt completely at ease, like if she was meant to be there. The gloomy weather, the streets full of people running all over the place, and most of all, her independence. She had no idea how much she needed her independence: at the beginning it was tough, but after the first few months she was so in peace with herself. Though, despite all of this, the text she received that morning had broken every little piece of certainty. She was angry, at herself and at Brian, who sent the text. How could he do that to her? After everything that happened, he told her she loved her. The more she thought about that, the more she was furious. The reason why she came to London was pure and simple, and some of a cliché: Brian, her long-lasting boyfriend, left her because he wasn’t happy anymore. Not with her, anyway. After almost 10 years together, Sophie was too overwhelmed to continue with her old life and decided to leave. And now, one year later, she was finally in peace with herself. Just the night before she told her friend at work that today was her first anniversary in London and she was so happy and proud of herself. However, Brian had other plans, like always: he ruined that day by sending that stupid text.
Come home. How could he possibly think she’s coming home? She will never be able to return home. Never.
«Here you are!», a shrill voice made her wince. Becca was behind her, tighten in her beige coat. «Hey, what you doing here?», asked Sophie. «Come inside, it will rain any moment!», she shouted at her, over the sound of another thunder. Sophie smiled and after one more look at the grey sky and the rooftop of the city, she entered with her friend.
«Are you okay?». Becca has the amazing skill of reading people at one look. Sophie couldn’t hide anything from her. «Not really», she answered, showing the text. «What a bastard», it was the only thing Becca said. «Today, of all days!». Sophie shrugged her shoulders and take the cup of tea she made for her. «Do you want to answer him?», asked Becca. She shook her head, without even thinking about it. «Absolutely not. I have no interest in talking to him», she said. Becca looked at her and took her hands. «That’s good. You are stronger than you think. Screw him!». Sophie laughed and she was so thankful to have her in her life.
The club was noisy and full of people, but Becca insisted to go out and celebrate the first anniversary of her friend. Sophie knew that she did it also to distract her, and she was glad; a nice night out to celebrate the important achievement of her life was exactly what she needed.
«Cheers to you, girl!», toasting her friend. «Cheers!», Sophie also screamed, laughing. She had never been a very “disco person”, but those clubs were like a must in the city; so, from time to time, Sophie agreed to go with her best friend and they always had good times.
The music was so loud that she could feel it inside her body, like some sort of new energy flowing through her veins; Sophie closed her eyes and started to dance, ignoring the world around her and pushing away all the bad feelings and the sadness. The only thing she wanted was to be happy and she knew she couldn’t go back, no matter what. She loved Brian once with all her heart, but the times when he comes first was over. For too long she had put herself in second place, because the love she felt for him was so strong that made her completely blind. But now her eyes were wide open, also thanks to Brian, in some part: if he never left her, Sophie would still in the same place, miserable and depressed. She wouldn’t be able to leave him, because she was too afraid to the unknown; now, instead, she was craving the unknown, new adventures and new situations of any kind. That’s why she couldn’t be able to return home: not now, not ever. Her old life would be too much to bear; every street, bar, restaurant would bring back some memories, and Sophie was so tired of the past.
«Hey, I’m going out for a bit!», screamed Sophie to her friend. Becca nodded, continuing to dance. The fresh, crispy air hit her face, making her flinch: she inspired deeply with her eyes closed and a smile in her face. «Hey, you okay?», asked a voice near her. Sophie opened her brown eyes and laughed; her long hair was tied in a messy ponytail, she was out of breath and from the outside she probably looked like a total mess. «Yeah, thanks!», she answered. The guy who asked didn’t seem so convinced. «You sure?», he insisted. Sophie nodded and smiled at him: «I’m just catching my breath after all the dancing». The guy muttered a simple "okay" and returned to his seat, facing the back door of the club. Only then Sophie realized he was the club's bouncer. “Well, now that I look at him I could see it before…”, she thought. Then, out of nowhere, a constant beep brought her back to reality and she realized that her phone was ringing. Of course, the name on the display was the only one she didn’t want to see: Brian. Sophie immediately refused the call, but he insisted again and again. “Please, Brian, stop calling me. I don’t want to talk to you!”, she answered with anger. The voice on the other end of the line stayed silent. “Please, can we talk?”, he said, after few minutes. Sophie was so angry and frustrated that her eyes filled with tears. “About what? I have my life, now. What you want from me? Is Jennifer already left you?!”, she screamed. “Please, don’t say that…”. That answer made Sophie realize that she was right. “You know what, Brian? I’m happy now and I don’t need you anymore. I will never come back home, not for you and not for anyone. Goodbye”. She hung up and felt so proud of her.
She really was over him, once and for all. She felt so powerful and confident, and in that moment, Sophie realized that her life was still at the beginning: she felt like reborn and couldn’t be happier.